Airports

Kid Band Week at Austin Bergstrom Int’l Airport

Austin calls itself the Live Music Capital of the World and that claim extends to Austin Bergstrom International Airport, where there are more than 20 live music shows a week.

This week is Kid Band Week (July 17 – 21, 2017; Monday – Friday) featuring local musicians and bands ranging in age from 10 to 18 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.at the Asleep at the Wheel Stage, located near Gate 10.

Here’s the line-up:

Free airport meals for military personnel

Here’s a nice airport perk:

Paradies Lagardère, which operates restaurants in many North American airports, is once again offering free meals to U.S. military personnel through its Treat Our Troops program.

Between Memorial Day and July 4th, active or retired U.S. military may receive a free menu item and a non-alcoholic beverage in these participating airport restaurant and shops.

Asheville Regional Airport (AVL) – Blue Ridge Tavern Long Beach Airport (LGB) – The Boathouse, Long Beach Marche, 4th Street Vine
Austin–Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) – Ruta Maya Coffee, ThunderCloud Subs Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport (XNA) – Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, Core Brewing Co., CNBC Arkansas Traveler, Jammin’ Java, Say Si Bon! Gourmet Market, Smokewood American Grill
Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) – Abacus, Hickory, Whitetail Bistro Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) – Bar Symon, Bottega dei Sapori
Denver International Airport (DEN) – Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, Big Bowl, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, The Magic Pan, Say Si Bon! TravelMart, Steve’s Snappin’ Dogs Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) – Big Bowl, The Magic Pan, Say Si Bon! Gourmet Market, Washington Pour Bar, Wow Bao, U Street Pub
Eagle County Regional Airport (EGE Eagle, Colo.) – Alpenglo Grille, Alpenglo Express Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) – Pei Wei Asian Diner
Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) – Sweet Auburn Market  

 Active and retired U.S. military service personnel  just need to show their military identification when ordering or checking out and receive one menu item such as an entrée, sandwich, appetizer or salad, and a non-alcoholic beverage.

Hockey at airports? In restaurants and bars, yes.

Courtesy Provincial Archives of Alberta, via Flickr Commons.

If you’re a hockey fan, you’re no doubt paying attention to what’s happening with the NHL season playoffs and looking for TVs in airport where you can watch the games and be with your people.

Turns out, there  are plenty of hockey-themed restaurants and bars in airports.

Here are just a few, operated by HMSHost

Avenue des Canadiens at Montréal-Trudeau International Airport’s Domestic Terminal by Gate 01 celebrates the Montreal Canadiens.

Minnesota Wild in Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport’s Concourse H is Minnesota Wild-themed.

Sharks Cage Sports Bar & Grill in San Jose International Airport’s Terminal B by Gate B18 is all about the San Jose Sharks.

Stanley’s Blackhawks Kitchen & Tap in Chicago O’Hare International Airport’s Terminal 2 by Gate E5 celebrates the Chicago Blackhawks.

Anaheim Ducks Breakaway Bar & Grill in John Wayne Airport’s Terminal C is where Anaheim Ducks fans will feel welcome.

And  Vancouver Canucks Bar & Grill in Vancouver International Airport’s US Terminal by Gate E81 is all about Vancouver’s NHL team, the Canucks.

Satisfied customers at these winning airports

DFW International Airport

Airports Council International (ACI) World just released its Airport Service Quality awards – which measure passenger satisfaction – and some of your favorite airports are likely on the list of 2016 winners.

In the Best Airport by Region (counting airports with over 2 million passengers a year), it was a three-way tie between Indianapolis International Airport (IND), Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) and Toronto Billy Bishop Airport (YTZ) for Best Airport in North America.

In the “Best Airport in North America,” – by size – category:

*Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport took top honors among airports serving over 40 million passengers a year;

*Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport got the 1st place nod for airports service 25 to 40 million passengers;

*Tampa International Airport won for airports service 15-25 million passengers a year,

*Indianapolis International Airport got the 1st place prize for airports serving 5 to 15 million passengers a year; and

*Toronto Billy’s Bishop Airport (YYZ) won Best Airport in North American in the 2-5 million passengers a year category.

One other award to take note of: “Best Improved Airport in North America,” which went to  John Glenn Columbus International Airport (CMH).

See the full list of winners from around the world here.

 

Chinese New Year at airports & on planes

Lunar New Year and Chinese New Year celebrations begin this weekend and airports and airlines are celebrating the Year of the Rooster with decorations, special meals, promotions and events.

Vancouver International Airport, a major trans-Pacific hub, has special decorations in the terminals and a wide variety of events planned for this Friday, including a traditional Lion Dance, retail specials and an appearance by the Fortune God who will hand out red envelopes to lucky passengers who will have a chance to win prizes.

At San Francisco International Airport, which boasts that it serves more cities in China than any other North American airport, look for special Lunar New Year graphics on signs, on the airport’s social media outlets and on its website.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport will celebrate the Lunar New Year on Friday, Jan. 27 with traditional and modern Chinese music from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Asleep at the Wheel stage, located across from Gate 10.

Lunar New Year activities at Hong Kong International Airport include daily Lion Dance performances and multiple chances to meet and greet the God of Fortune.

At Singapore’s Changi Airport, which does everything in a big way, the terminals are decorated with festive decorations and plants, the popular Pokémon installation has receive a seasonally-appropriate makeover, and there will be an award-winning Lion Dance troupe performing in the terminals on multiple days. The Fortune God Mascot will also be on hand distributing fortune cookies.

To mark the Lunar New Year, Cathay Pacific will be serving two types of festive puddings (Red Dates Pudding and Turnip Pudding with Conpoy and Chinese ham) to travelers in first and business class cabins on many long haul flights.

Qatar Airways is also celebrating the Chinese New Year by serving a special Spring Festival-inspired menu on board flights to popular Asia destinations from January 28-30.

Deal-wise, United Airlines is offering promotional fares (through Feb 1) on its flights to Hangzhou, China from San Francisco and other cities and Plaza Premium Lounge is running a Chinese New Year ‘Buy 3 Get 2 Free’ offer on lounge gift cards that is valid through February 6.

And Eva Air is celebrating the year of the Rooster with a special Chinese New Year menu on flights outbound from Taipei to North America and Paris on January 27, 2017 and special Chinese New Year-themed service items on these same flights from January 27 to February 5, 2017.

Many service items on Eva Air’s Hello Kitty Jets have also been refreshed for the Chinese New Year, and some new characters – Gudetama and Bad Badtz-maru are featured on the themed paper napkins, headrest covers and the traditional red envelopes handed out to family members and loved ones  to wish them health and prosperity this time of year.